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September 5, 2008


At Gotham Acme, Howard Wolfson interviews Will Calhoun of Living Colour.

Q: Given how terrible things are in this country over the last eight years, what do you think that Barack Obama will be able to accomplish in the White House?

A: I still think a lot of it has to do with us. I think that Barack Obama can accomplish a lot of things in the White House but I think what’s important is the citizens of this country put pressure on him and demand things. We have to become involved. We can no longer be in the stands yelling ’shoot’ or ’swing’ or ‘don’t drop the ball.’ We have to get on the field now and put the pressure on Obama and Biden and everybody else – locals, our senators, and our mayors.

nyctaper continues its string of wonderful live recordings by sharing mp3s of a recent Evangelista show.

The Washington Post profiles singer-songwriter Juliana Hatfield.

"From the beginning, I've always had a knack for catchy melodies," she says. "But I went through a period when I was trying to be rock-and-roll and have a rock-and-roll attitude. I was fighting my nature by trying to play really hard and sing really hard. But at a certain point, I realized that I loved syrupy pop music with tons of harmony."

Bradley's Almanac is sharing mp3s of a June performance by the National.

Drowned in Sound recaps August's Music releases.

BBC news reports on a study that music tastes and personality are linked.

Indie: Low self-esteem, creative, not hard working, not gentle

The Walkmen's Walt Martin makes a mixtape for Drowned in Sound.

The Christian Science Monitor visits the stomping grounds of author Flannery O'Connor.

It's a failing of literary tourists to assume that the characters and incidents in an author's work are all drawn from life. This impression is reinforced when Mrs. Jones tells us about taking a course in O'Connor's stories with a local friend. The instructor, not local, was distressed that the two students kept interrupting classes with laughter. "We recognized the folks Flannery was writing about," says Mrs. Jones. "Her observations were so accurate, we couldn't help laughing."

The Valley Advocate profiles David Berman of the Silver Jews.

After spending time in Charlottesville at the University of Virginia, in New York City, and finally at the University of Massachusetts as a student and teacher, Berman moved to Tennessee to live and work. In Nashville, he found a city not only conducive to his work as a (critically acclaimed) poet, but to songwriting as well. "There are statues around the city of Chet Atkins and Harold Bradley. When you're just out running errands, you're constantly reminded of countrypolitan production values," Berman says. "It's nice to live in a town where there is a hall of fame for songwriters. They may not know your name, but they respect what you do."

Berman also talks to the Philadelphia Inquirer about playing live.

"Most musicians start playing live when they're younger," he says. "When you go see them, they've seen you before. But when I tell you that I love you, I mean it. You're one of my first audiences. I haven't slept with a million other audiences before. It's like a second act in my life."

Guardian readers recommend songs about hero worship.

OC Weekly points out several worthwhile world music blogs.

In the Los Angeles Times, Ed Park reviews two novels with rock and roll at their hearts, Martin Millar's Suzy, Led Zeppelin, and Me and John Darnielle's Master of Reality.

Alison Bechdel talks to io9 about her "Bechdel Rule" for films:

1. Does it have at least two women in it,
2. Who [at some point] talk to each other,
3. About something besides a man.

Yeah, I'm very glad people are talking about the "Bechdel Rule," even though I'm a little ambivalent about that name. When I talked to the NPR reporter, I suggested changing it to "Ripley's Rule," after the Sigourney Weaver character in "Alien." Since at the time of the rule's inception, that was the only movie that fit its criteria. But she didn't use that part of the interview.

Out lists the 100 greatest, gayest music albums.

Joshua Henkin, whose novel Matrimony is now out in paperback, guest-blogged at The Elegant Variation yesterday.

Blender lists the 33 "most overrated people, places, trends and other junk in rock."

NPR's Talk of the Nation excerpts from David Lovelace's memoir about his family experiences with bipolar disorder, Scattershot: My Bipolar Family.

also at Largehearted Boy:

daily mp3 downloads
Try It Before You Buy It (mp3s and full album streams from this week's CD releases)
this week's CD releases


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